Section 17. The state secretary shall, upon application, provide blank forms for the nomination of candidates for all state offices; and he shall send blank forms for certificates of nomination for the office of representative in the general court to the clerk of each city and town for the use of any caucus or convention other than of political parties held therein for the nomination of candidates for that office. He shall likewise provide the clerks of towns wherein official ballots are used with blank forms for the nomination of candidates for town offices. In cities blank forms for the nomination of candidates for city offices shall be provided by the city clerk. The state secretary shall not supply candidates for town offices directly with blank forms for nomination. The city or town clerk shall not furnish blank forms for the nomination of candidates for city or town office to any person other than a candidate seeking such nomination or a person presenting the signed authorization of a candidate to secure said forms on his behalf. In no case shall any blank forms for such nominations be larger than eight and one half inches by fourteen inches, nor shall anyone be prohibited from making exact copies of such blanks provided by the secretary of state for the purpose of collecting signatures for such nominations, nor shall any such copies be rejected for certification or submittal to the secretary of state.